Friday, June 13, 2014


"Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings, for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not by foods, which have not benefited those devoted to them." -Hebrews 13:9 (ESV)

My sister Tricia shared this verse with me this week. I had her send it to me because I wanted to study it in context and explore what the Lord might want to say to me. I came to several conclusions.

1) I do not want to be devoted to foods.

I do not want to be devoted to anything, saving Christ. Not THM for me. Not paleo for Trish. Nothing but Him. Jesus as Lord.  Good, fresh, healthy, chemical-free, organic food is very important and is essential to living an active life. It is. But my passion and devotion belong to Jesus.

2) I want my heart to be strengthened by God's grace.

Which is sufficient. I have to trust that, not just believe it. Sufficient...enough...words that grow in meaning and depth the longer I live. My strength does not come from human sources, but from my Creator.

3) I do not want to be led astray by "diverse and strange teachings."

In all my learning and studying and exploring remedies for Tricia's diseases, I will never compromise my faith in Almighty God to save, deliver, and heal. I will not dabble in the reflexology, or any other heathen or humanistic practice that is present in essential oil instruction or any other treatment that I explore.  Thankfully, my local group and upline in YLEO is not into all that!

4) I am thankful.

I an grateful for the THM lifestyle, paleo eating plan, essential oil education, and all other tools for living a healthy, courageous life, but my lifeline and source is Jesus Christ in whom and by whom all things exist. My life depends on Him, my Sustainer, not on what I eat.

So I don't agree with something like this:

Sunday, June 8, 2014


I am reading and studying the book of Colossians today, doing an inductive study on it using The Hayford Bible Handbook. Love this resource (thanks for sharing, Mama!).

Some excerpts from my reading:

"Colossians shows that our acceptance before God, and thereby our authority under Him, result from our finding both pardon and position in Christ."

"'In Christ,' each believer has been invited to be a 'joint heir' with Christ, possibly the most amazing proposition in the whole of redemption's provisions."

"For Paul, the lordship of Christ in the believer's life is the most critical and clearest evidence of the Spirit's presence."

"Because the believer is risen with Christ (3:1-4), he is to put off the old man and put on the new (3:5-17), which will result in holiness in all relationships (3:18-25)."

"Colossians sets forth Christ as supreme Lord in whose sufficiency the believers find completeness."

"'Jesus is Lord' is the church's earliest confession. It remains the abiding test of authentic Christianity."

"Ascetic observance does not enhance our standing before God."

"Our preoccupation must be with Jesus Christ and God's Word. Our appeal is to the Holy Spirit, who makes available every gift necessary for our lives and for the liberating work of Christ in the world."

As I read this commentary and these chapters penned by the Apostle Paul, I am stirred with conviction and godly remorse. I don't think that I have followed the three steps here and put off my old man and put on the new completely, so I don't have the result of holiness in all my relationships. I fail miserably here. I do not "walk worthy of the Lord (1:10)."

Just today, I snapped at my sister for criticizing my driving. I just blew up. If my old man is put off, is dug out, and is put to death, then my response would have been a world of different. I have been delivered from the power of darkness by Jesus' work on the Cross (1:13), and I have got to live like it! I am "not to allow anything other than the Word of God to control or judge" me.

Something else come to mind that I constantly need to remember: never allow worldly pursuits to "waste my mental or spiritual energy." I am interested in so many different things, various passions and hobbies. Concentrate, Mary Beth. Set your affections and thinking on Jesus (3:1). 

Jesus has done this work already with His death and resurrection. But it's not enough to know or believe this. I must trust in it and adopt and practice it diligently (3:12-14). Yahweh's purpose is for Jesus to be reproduced in me.

And I need to be more diligent in Bible study and memory/meditation (3:16-17). I need to devote more of my life to prayer (4:2-6). I repent for prayerless days, Lord. My time is Your gift.


I have been a lifelong supporter of Christian foreign missions. When I was very young, one of the guys in our home fellowship went to the Philippines as a missionary with his new wife. I was intrigued with the idea that a person could leave everyone and everything to share Jesus with others.  Fred was many years older than I and was like an big brother to us in many ways...he sure knew how to tease us! I made cards and wrote him letters for all those years that they were overseas and still have all the letters that he wrote back. Treasures.

Fred Williamson died last year. I had lost contact with him many years ago, back in the mid 90s. He had been very sick, due largely to the drug-laced past that God had been saved him from as a young man. I didn't find out about his passing until after he was gone. I ran across his daughter and ex-wife on Facebook and reconnected. So many years later, but I cried like a baby.

I was ten years old when I attended my first Missions Conference at Liberty Church back in 1986. There was just something about all those sessions of hearing missionary after missionary share about their work among the masses of the world that set my little heart on fire for missionary work. I opened my heart up to God's calling to sharing the Gospel. I raised my hand and pledged $10 a month to support my first missionary family, the McManuses in Bangladesh a few years later.

In recent years, I have been supporting children in the SEED program out of Arise & Shine Academy in the Philippines. The Student Evangelization Education and Development was birthed from the out-of-the-box missionary work of Dirk and Elizabeth Wood, grads of Liberty Bible School back when I was a kid. My first student to graduate from ASA and then college was Angela. She is an wonderful girl who loves the Lord, helps to lead worship in her church, and is now employed as a nurse after completing college and passing her exams. She used to send me the more adorable handmade cards and crafts, and continues to stay in touch with her "Tita Mary Beth." She is precious!

I just received notice that my second girl has graduated now. Hannah is the eldest child of a Filipino pastor and seems to be shy. I started supporting her last year, so I have not had a chance to really get to know her yet, but I plan to support her for as long as she is in college so I'll be able to.

I want to complete GLOBE's Perspectives class one of these springs. Several of my former students have completed it and mentioned to me that I would love it. Perspectives is a class that emphasized our "world-sized" role in God's global purpose for His Church. The course is focused around 4 loci or perspective points: Biblical, historical, cultural, and strategic.  I look forward to taking it one day.

What a blessing it has been to sow into Jesus' Kingdom. I will never know, this side of heaven, who has been won to Christ via my efforts and monetary sacrifices. But it is all nothing, considering I have not given up my life as Jesus did or as some of these missionaries have to serve our Lord. All these seeds will grow and spread like fire. What is done in Christ's name and is grounded in the Gospel will last forever!

So what missionary endeavor do you support right now? What ministry has God asked you to sow into for the furtherance of His Kingdom and the Gospel? The eternal rewards are just that, eternal.

I can think of so many missionaries, both novice and veteran, who need support as finances are stretched across the globe. Several of my friends are embarking on their own journeys as English teachers to share the Good News in a difficult field, a sensitive nation in Southeast Asia. They need support right now, as they are in their fund-raising stage of preparation. Open your heart and wallet to support those that Father places in your path. Contact me on Facebook, and I will be happy to connect you with them!

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